Today, I want to share my favorite Frank Bettger quotes from his best-selling book, How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling.
Selling is an art-form. No one is born a salesperson. It is a skill that is learned and developed over a period of years. When I first joined the network marketing industry 18-years ago, I was a lousy salesman. I couldn’t sell ice to an Eskimo. I lacked confidence. I had worthiness issues. And, I had a horrible attitude.
However, I was extremely committed to become a good salesperson. I decided that I would master this skill, even if it killed me. I became a student of selling. I read every book I could on the subject. I was obsessed.
One book really stands out above all others. It’s titled How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling.
This book is a masterpiece. I’ve read this book countless times now and I learn something every time I re-read it. What I want to do in this post is share some of my favorite Frank Bettger quotes from the book.
The book is old. It’s been around for at least 50 or 60-years now, maybe even longer. But don’t let that fool you; the content is still extremely relevant and helpful.
Top 44 Frank Bettger Quotes
Listed below are some of my favorite Frank Bettger quotes from the book. Each quote is in bold and italics. After each quote I will provide my own two cents on the subject. Enjoy.
# 1: This business of selling narrows down to one thing – just one thing…seeing the people!
Selling is a numbers game. Yes, skills and strategy are also important, but what you lack in skill you can make up for in numbers. In order to make sales, you must get out there and meet new people. The more people you approach, the more appointments you will set, and the more money sales you will make!
# 2: I became aware that my time was worth something, and I determined in the future to waste as little of it as possible.
Plan your week ahead of time and be disciplined enough to stick with your plan. Manage your time wisely. Make sure that each day you work you have a specific game-plan. Break down your day hour by hour and always make sure you are doing the single most productive thing with your time.
# 3: The records showed that 70 per cent of my sales were made on the first interview, 23 per cent on the second, and 7 per cent on the third and after. But listen to this: 50 per cent of my time was spent going after the 7 per cent.
If you don’t track your stats and results, you won’t know how many times, on average, it takes to close your prospect. Keep this information on every prospect you talk with. Figure out, on average, how many follow ups you must do with someone BEFORE they make a purchase and then make sure you do that many follow ups with each person you talk with. If someone is constantly stalling, replace them with a new prospect.
# 4: Without records, we have no way of knowing what we are doing wrong.
This goes hand in hand with the previous tip. If you don’ track it and monitor it, you can’t improve it. Do not leave your success up to chance. Keep daily, weekly, monthly and yearly records so you can monitor your progress and identify areas to improve.
# 5: Selling is the easiest job in the world if you work it hard – but the hardest job in the world if you try to work it easy.
The harder you work the luckier you will get. The more prospects you talk with, the more sales you will get, and the more money you will make!
# 6: You can’t collect a commission until you make the sale; you can’t make the sale, ‘til you write the order; you can’t write the order, ‘til you have an interview; and you can’t have an interview ‘til you make the call!
Everything in sales begins with the initial contact. Whether you are calling for an appointment, emailing someone, communicating on Facebook or LinkedIn, or even texting someone, your # 1 priority is to make new exposures daily. The more exposures/contacts you make, the more appointments you will set, and the more sales you will get.
# 7: I would urge any man or woman who is being held back by fear, and who lacks courage and self-confidence, to join the best public-speaking course in his or her community.
I can speak from personal experience and tell you that Toastmasters helped me immensely. Once I mastered how to communicate with large groups of people, it became very easy for me to talk with anyone one on one.
# 8: All the leaders and successful men I’ve ever met have had courage and self-confidence, and most of them, I notice, are able to express themselves convincingly.
People want to do business with people who are successful and have a great self-image. Work on your confidence, attitude, and people skills. Never stop growing and learning. Your business and income will only grow as much as you do!
# 9: It is surprising how much I can get done when I take enough time for planning, and it is perfectly amazing how little I get done without it.
Plan your work and work your plan. Remember that failing to plan is planning to fail. You should never just “wing it.” You should always have a plan for each day, week and month.
# 10: I don’t think anybody is cut out to be a salesman – or anything else. I think we’ve got to cut ourselves out to be whatever we want to be.
If you want to succeed at something, you must take the time, money and effort to develop the right skill-set and right mind-set. This won’t happen overnight, but most people can master a new skill within 2-3 years.
# 11: Most of the successful men I’ve met are absolutely ruthless with their time.
You only get 24-hours in a day. Manage it wisely. Keep the main thing the main thing and focus on the money producing activities, not busy work.
# 12: Whatever success I’ve had in this business has been due to the fact that I refuse to allow anything or anybody to interfere with the schedule of the week which I devote every Friday to preparing.
Make a schedule and stick to it, no matter what. Keep your business and goals a top priority and do not put it on the back burner when life gets in the way.
# 13: One of the greatest satisfactions in life comes from getting things done.
Don’t confuse being busy with being productive. Identify the most 3-5 important things you need to do each day and NEVER let a day go by where you don’t complete those tasks.
# 14: The most important secret of salesmanship is to find out what the other fellow wants, then help him find out the best way to get it.
Think of yourself as a consultant or advisor, not a salesperson. Ask your prospect questions, identify a need and offer your products, service or opportunity as a way to fill that need. People really only care about themselves. If you show your prospect how what you are offering them can help them solve a problem they have, they will take out their credit card and buy!
# 15: Top salesmen are all hungry for new ideas and always hunting for ways to do their job better.
Strive to learn something new each day and improve yourself each day. Be a student of your business. Be a student of sales. Keep an open mind and never stop learning.
# 16: When you show a man what he wants, he’ll move heaven and earth to get it.
Figure out what the other person wants (their hot button) and show them how what you are offering will help them achieve that.
# 17: You gain a big advantage when you make an appointment.
Be the welcomed guest not the uninvited pest. Always work by appointment, just like professionals do.
# 18: Never try to cover too many points; don’t obscure the main issue; find out what it is, then stay right on the beam.
Your entire presentation should be centered around one thing: how your product or service helps your client solve their problem. If you can do that, you will make more sales.
# 19: There are only two factors that move men to action: desire for gain, and fear of loss.
People will do more to “avoid losing something” than they will in “hopes of gaining something.” Always explain to your prospect what they LOSE if they do not take action today!
# 20 People don’t like to be sold. They like to buy.
Your job is to be so good at what you do that your prospect ends up selling themselves on your product or service.
# 21: Praise your competitors.
Never speak ill of anyone, especially your competition. Don’t bash other companies, products or salespeople. That makes you look petty and unprofessional. Instead, talk about what makes you, your company, and your products different.
# 22: Everyone likes to feel important. People are hungry for praise.
Find simple ways to compliment people. Don’t try to flatter people either. Be genuine, sincere, specific and honest when you give a compliment.
# 23: Assume a close.
Assume that everyone you talk to WILL buy from you. It’s vital that you have this positive energy inside of you. If you honestly believe they are not going to buy from you, they probably won’t. If you honestly believe they will buy from you, there’s a good chance they will. Remember, thoughts are things. Positive attracts and negative repels.
# 24: See things from the other person’s point of view and talk in terms of his wants, needs and desires.
Focus on what your prospect wants, not what you want. If you help people get what they want you will naturally get what you want.
# 25: Write out what you said in your last selling interview. Then see how many places you can find to strike out the personal pronoun “I”, or “we”, and change it to “you” or “your”. Put you in the interview.
This is some amazing advice. Design your entire sales presentation on helping your prospect get what they want. Remember, people really only care about themselves and their own needs. If you base your entire presentation on the other person, there is a high likelihood they will buy from you.
# 26: Putting my ideas in the form of questions showed him how I felt about what he should do, but at the same time kept him in the buyer’s seat. Each time he offered and objection or comment, I passed the back right back to him with another question.
Answer every question with a question. Do more listening than talking. If you don’t know what to say, ask a question. This puts you in control of the conversation and sales process.
# 27: The “don’t you think” habit is a little aid which I find helps me avoid making so many positive statements.
Get the prospect’s opinion about things whenever possible. The more you can get your prospect to say YES, throughout the conversation, the better.
# 28: Encourage your prospects to talk.
Ask questions and listen. You have two ears and one mouth for a reason. Use them in that proportion.
# 29: Nothing will take the place of complete honesty.
Never lie, use hype or pressure. Be sincere, genuine and treat everyone as good as you would want someone to treat your best friend.
# 30: I’ve always noticed that the leaders are men who know their business.
Work on your product knowledge. Be a student of your own business. Learn everything you can about what you sell, so you can answer questions and objections.
# 31: Clothes don’t make the man, but they do make ninety percent of what you see of him.
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Dress to impress. Also, check your breath to make sure it is fresh.
# 32: I find that people love to hear that they have helped you.
When someone helps you, let them know about it. Send them a handwritten note or give them a call to tell them so.
# 33: Try to get a man to tell you what is his greatest ambition in life. Help him raise his sights.
Get other people talking about themselves, their goals, and their future. Learn how to ask questions and listen.
# 34: Action and feeling go together.
Let your actions control your emotions, rather than letting your emotions control your actions. And remember, action cures fear!
# 35: I’ve found it pleases people when I pass them on the street to give them a big, cheerful smile.
Your smile is your best-selling asset. Smile whenever you can.
# 36: Over talking is one of the worst of all social faults.
You have two ears and one mouth for a reason. Use them in that proportion. When you are talking with someone else, make it a goal to let them talk at least 2/3 of the conversation, rather than you dominating the entire conversation. Good listeners are welcomed everywhere they go!
# 37: When you’re scared…admit it!
If you’re talking to someone you really admire and respect, and you are scared by their success, let them know! They will feel humbled and honored by the sincere compliment!
# 38: The approach is the most difficult step in the sale!
Prospecting sucks, but without prospects you won’t have any sales. Good marketing can make this much easier for you!
# 39: There is little use telling a sales story to a prospect who hasn’t first been sold on the importance of listening to you.
Find out what the other person wants first before you offer them what you have. Sell the appointment and let the appointment sell your product or service.
# 40: Some of the best contacts I ever made were men who were extremely difficult to see.
Busy, successful people are the people you want to do business with.
# 41: Looking back over my own career of selling, the biggest regret I have is that I didn’t spend twice as much time calling on, studying and servicing my customers’ interests.
Find out what the other person wants and show them how to get it. Put your prospect’s needs first. Help them get what they want and you will be well taken care of.
# 42: The best prospects are the ones who object.
Every prospect will have a few objections. It’s a normal part of the sales process. You must learn how to overcome objections and close your prospects. Keep in mind that an objection is simply a request for more information.
# 43: Nobody will remember the times you struck out in the early innings if you hit a home run with the bases full in the ninth.
Win when it counts. It’s not how you start that matters, it’s how you finish that matters.
# 44: Failures mean nothing at all if success comes eventually. You must fail your way to success.
Success is never a straight line. It is filled with zigs and zags, ups and downs. Most successful people have failed 9 times out of 10, but because they stuck with it, they eventually made it big. Stay the course!
About the Book
This book was published more than 50-years ago. It has sold millions of copies and is still available in print. You can buy it anywhere books are sold. Order a copy here.
About Frank Bettger
Frank was born in 1888 and died in 1981. He was a former professional baseball player with the St. Louis Cardinals. After baseball he became a salesman with the Fidelity Mutual Life Insurance Company. After a successful career in sales, he later met Dale Carnegie, and then authored his best-selling book How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success.
In conclusion, these Frank Bettger quotes are my top 44 selling tips. I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did. Please leave a comment below to tell me which one of these Frank Bettger quotes is your favorite and why. I look forward to hearing from you. Have a great day.